Karly Chambers, a senior accounting major from El Dorado, Arkansas, learned some valuable lessons about herself and picked up some new skills to be applied to her future career goals by attending Beta Gamma Sigma’s Global Leadership Summit in Chicago.
Her experiences in the Rankin College of Business at SAU inspired her to attend the summit, which gathers some of the highest-achieving students from business schools around the world for a unique learning experience.
Beta Gamma Sigma is an honors society for business schools that, like the Rankin College, are AACSB accredited. BGS hosts the summit annually, allowing students the opportunity to build their skills, network, hear inspirational business leaders, and meet successful entrepreneurs.
Shelia Pearson, faculty advisor of SAU’s BGS chapter, sent an email to inductees last spring letting them know about the summit, and Chambers immediately wanted to attend.
“I represented SAU, attended lectures given by various business leaders, and worked with a team of other students on a case study,” Chambers said.
Snow greeted Chambers on her arrival to Chicago. “It was a record-breaking snow day,” she said. “Snow in Chicago is nothing like it is in south Arkansas – it was breathtaking.” After two days in her hotel, Chambers organized a group of people to go sightseeing and eat deep-dish pizza. “Chicago will always hold a special place in my heart,” she said.
Before attending the session, Chambers took the Clifton Strengths Test, which reveals a person’s top five strengths based on a series of questions. “I learned that my strengths are largely based on building relationships,” she said. “They taught us to play to people’s strengths in order to better participate in and lead teams. We had hands-on practice when we broke up into teams to work on a case study competition.”
Chambers attended lectures on business basics, the power of grit, emotional and social intelligence, leadership qualities, and more. The purpose of the summit is to teach business students to be the best person and leader they can be. “All the speakers were very inspiring,” Chambers said.
The Rankin College of Business was instrumental in preparing Chambers for her experience. “I researched SAU’s business program and was very impressed,” she said of her decision to come to SAU. “Graduates from SAU are doing amazing things and this school seemed like it would be the best one to prepare me for the future I want. Choosing SAU has easily been one of the best decisions I’ve ever made.”
Chambers expressed gratitude to her professors, especially Megan Whitehead, instructor of finance, and Jody Nations. “They have helped me so much in and out of the classroom,” Chambers said.
She plans to sit for her CPA after graduating, having worked for a local firm as well as Southern Aluminum in the accounting department. “I want to eventually open a non-profit to help educate and provide financial advice to underprivileged families,” she said. “That is my ultimate dream and is a cause very close to my heart.”